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Large riverboat to dock in Kimmswick Friday

It's the second time this summer a steamboat vessel will dock in the small river city, bringing in much-needed tourism revenue

KIMMSWICK, Mo. — The American Countess is set to dock in Kimmswick late Friday morning. The paddlewheel riverboat is one of four vessels operated by the American Queen Steamboat Company.

Kimmswick Mayor Phil Stang said he's been in contact with the crew on the American Countess and estimates its arrival between 11 a.m. and noon. But he warned the arrival time is fluid. 

He said about 80 people are on the Mississippi River cruise. The city will welcome passengers with a small ceremony and give the crew a proclamation. 

Last month, Kimmswick hosted American Countess' sister vessel, the American Duchess. It was the first passenger riverboat to use the new $1.3 million port in the city

Stang said tour buses will be waiting for the passengers to take them to local attractions including: Mastodon State Park, Kimmswick Historical Society Museum, LaChance Vineyards and the Anheuser Museum and Estate. Passengers will also have the opportunity to visit local boutiques and gift shops. 

The American Countess is expected to depart from Kimmswick around 10 p.m. tonight. 

Stang said the riverboats docking in his city will help bring much-needed revenue. In 2020, Kimmswick was asking for donations to help keep the city running. The pandemic canceled the famous Strawberry and Apple Butter festivals in 2020. Stang said those festivals accounted for 80% of the city's revenue. 

Stang described the current conditions as "lean and mean" but said the city is making it by tightening its belt and cutting costs. He said the 2021 Strawberry Festival helped and he's looking forward to the Apple Butter Festival in October.